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Catholic converts on the rise: East Tennessee among nation's top 10 growth areas
Chattanooga Times Free Press ^ | 6/15/2014 | Kevin Hardy

Posted on 06/15/2014 4:12:26 AM PDT by markomalley

There was the man inspired by the written words of Pope Francis. There was the agnostic professor. And there was the widow of a Baptist preacher.

All of them Tennesseans, and all of them recent converts to one of the world's oldest Christian faiths.

In the South, Catholicism is growing. The Diocese of Knoxville was recently ranked among the top 10 in the nation for its rate of adult conversions.

All Southeast Tennessee Catholic parishes, including Chattanooga's, fall under the umbrella of Knoxville's diocese, one of 195 in the United States. A diocese is a geographic collection of parishes grouped together under the governance of a bishop. And many of the dioceses producing the most converts to the church are right here in the South, according to a recent study by Georgetown University's Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate.

Rates of Catholicism have always been strong in the Northeast and Midwest. But not in the protestant-heavy South.

So it's no wonder that Catholicism is growing faster here.

Mark Gray, a senior research associate at the Georgetown Center, said marriage is a common driver of Catholicism, as non-Catholics marry Catholics. And in Tennessee, non-Catholics and Catholics are more likely to marry simply because there are not enough Catholics to marry only other Catholics.

In the Volunteer State, about 8 percent of people are Catholic. That compares with 40 percent in Massachusetts and the national average of 24 percent.

"Tennessee is the third-least Catholic state in the country, which is exactly where we would expect these conversions to occur, because that 8 percent are likely marrying non-Catholics," Gray said.

In the Catholic Church, conversion is a commitment. It's more formal and involved than switching from one protestant church to another. And conversion is a commitment to the faith, not necessarily a particular church.

Before joining the church, converts take part in a college-like class that can last from nine months to a year.

"It is a very long program, and it's not something we take lightly, nor do the people becoming Catholic take it lightly," said Marvin Bushman, the director of religious education at Cleveland's St. Therese of Lisieux. "It is a big commitment."

Knoxville Bishop Richard F. Stika said the church is growing from rising minority populations, mainly Hispanics. Knoxville recently established a Vietnamese parish. And this part of the country is attracting more retirees and families, many of whom are Catholic.

"We're a growing Church, both in people who are choosing to become Catholic as well as people moving in from out of town," Stika told the diocesan newspaper, The East Tennessee Catholic.

At St. Therese, Brenda Blevins oversees the Catholic conversion program, called the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults, or RCIA. The Diocese of Knoxville, which includes 47 parishes, receives about 350 adult converts each year through RCIA.

Some come after marrying or dating a Catholic, but Blevins said many of their recent converts were single. And the RCIA program doesn't want people to just marry into the church.

"We want people to be here because they want to be and because they feel a call," she said.

And each convert has his own story. There are the college-age brothers who just joined together. And the widow of a Baptist minister who married a Catholic. Some come from protestant churches; others have never been baptized into any faith.

"I think part of the reason the Catholic Church is growing so much in Southeast Tennessee is because Southeast Tennessee is part of the Bible Belt," Blevins said. "And there are a lot of faithful Christians here."


TOPICS: Catholic
KEYWORDS: catholic; convert; trends
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1 posted on 06/15/2014 4:12:26 AM PDT by markomalley
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To: markomalley

I was always intrigued to see the number of RC schools in the areas of the old confederacy where I was stationed. For a relatively small denomination (in that area) they sure seemed to educate a lot of kids.


2 posted on 06/15/2014 4:14:23 AM PDT by MSF BU (n)
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To: markomalley

Praise be to GOD on this feast of the Most Blessed Holy Trinity!


3 posted on 06/15/2014 4:15:52 AM PDT by Biggirl (“Go, do not be afraid, and serve”-Pope Francis)
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To: MSF BU

Thank-you for your service and insights.


4 posted on 06/15/2014 4:16:51 AM PDT by Biggirl (“Go, do not be afraid, and serve”-Pope Francis)
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To: markomalley
This is my diocese, Knoxville. We always have great RCIA classes: the most satisfactory thing I've ever done in my parish is being part of the teaching team. Our catechumens are knowledgeable and well-prepared, and are a delight to work with.

Not that we couldn't do a whole lot better. I would like to see much more intensive evangelization. My dream...

5 posted on 06/15/2014 4:48:41 AM PDT by Mrs. Don-o (“Jews wait for the Lord, Protestants sing hymns to Him, Catholics say Mass and eat Him.”)
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To: markomalley

DEO VINDICE!

http://catholicknight.blogspot.com/2009/02/pope-pius-ix-and-confederacy.html

Southern Americans of today should take comfort knowing that the old Confederacy did have a European friend, and it just happened to be one of the most respected men in the world - not only a head of state, but also the leader of the world’s largest Christian religion. The day will come when Pope Pius IX will be canonized as a Saint. He has already been beatified, which puts him well on his way. When that day comes, Southerners will have a special bragging right, not enjoyed by many nations even today. They will not only be able to boast of his sympathies during and after the great War, but they will also have in their collective possession a relic of the man - a hand written letter and autographed photograph.


6 posted on 06/15/2014 5:11:48 AM PDT by NKP_Vet ("Truth is like a lion. You don't have to defend it. Let it loose. It will defend itself")
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To: markomalley
Which is overall due to immigration. Counting Catholics: ‘Church of immigrants’ poised for growth [FR]

American Grace (2010):  “Over the last few decades, large numbers of ‘Anglo’—that is, non-Latino—Catholics have been dropping out of or disengaging with the Catholic Church, without being replaced by other Anglo converts. … The Catholic fraction of the U.S. population has held steady only because the departing grandchildren of white ethnic immigrants of the first decades of the twentieth century have been roughly balanced by arriving Latino Catholics. … Just as white ethnic Catholics have rushed out one door of the Church, they have been replaced by new Latinos rushing in the other door.”


The Roman Catholic Church has known for years that its future in the United States depends heavily on Hispanics. The church, which is the largest religious denomination in the country, is already about 40 percent Hispanic, and the demographic change is inexorable: Within the next few decades, Hispanics are expected to make up a majority of American Catholics.

The influx of Hispanics has been a stabilizing factor for the church. Were it not for immigration, Catholicism in the United States would be dwindling as non-immigrant Catholics drift away from the church. http://www.nytimes.com/2014/05/06/upshot/hispanic-growth-is-strength-but-also-challenge-for-us-catholic-church.html?_r=0

Evangelical Churches (17%), had the lowest percentage of souls aged 18-29, versus Unaffiliated (31%), Muslims (29%), Historically Black Churches (24%), Mormons (24%) and Other Faiths (24%). Mainline Churches had the greater percentage (23%) of souls 65 and older. U.S. Religious landscape survey; Copyright © 2008 The Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life. http://religions.pewforum.org/comparisons#

Between 2000 and 2004, the net gain (the number of new churches minus the closed churches) in the number of evangelical churches was 5,452, but mainline and Catholic churches closed more than they started for a net loss of 2,200, while a net gain of 13,024 churches was necessary to keep up with the U.S. population growth. At those rates, by 2050, the percentage of the U.S. population attending church will be almost half of what it was in 1990. http://www.churchleaders.com/pastors/pastor-articles/139575-7-startling-facts-an-up-close-look-at-church-attendance-in-america.html

68% of those raised Roman Catholic still are Catholic (higher than the retention rates of individual Protestant denoms, but less than Jews at 76%). 15% are now Protestant (9% evangelical); 14% are unaffiliated. Pew forum, Faith in Flux (April 27, 2009) http://pewforum.org/uploadedfiles/Topics/Religious_Affiliation/fullreport.pdf


7 posted on 06/15/2014 5:19:32 AM PDT by daniel1212 (Come to the Lord Jesus as a contrite damned+destitute sinner, trust Him to save you, then live 4 Him)
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To: Mrs. Don-o; metmom; boatbums; caww; presently no screen name; redleghunter; Springfield Reformer; ..
Our catechumens are knowledgeable and well-prepared, and are a delight to work with.

I wonder how would they answer the following?

1. What is the basis for your assurance of truth?

2. Is an assuredly (if conditionally) infallible magisterium essential for determination of Truth (including which writings and men are of God) and preservation of faith?

3. Does being the historical instruments and stewards of Divine revelation mean that such is that assuredly infallible magisterium?

Are those who knowingly dissent from the latter in rebellion to God?

Ask them and report back, or tell me what you teach them.

8 posted on 06/15/2014 5:35:05 AM PDT by daniel1212 (Come to the Lord Jesus as a contrite damned+destitute sinner, trust Him to save you, then live 4 Him)
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To: daniel1212

Not just immigration, but also conversion, so this article is very much correct.


9 posted on 06/15/2014 5:53:33 AM PDT by Biggirl (“Go, do not be afraid, and serve”-Pope Francis)
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To: daniel1212

Set those questions aside and let the new Christian Catholics get to KNOW their faith FIRST.


10 posted on 06/15/2014 5:54:11 AM PDT by Biggirl (“Go, do not be afraid, and serve”-Pope Francis)
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To: Mrs. Don-o

God Bless you for your commitment to evangelize for both Jesus and the Gospel.


11 posted on 06/15/2014 5:55:40 AM PDT by Biggirl (“Go, do not be afraid, and serve”-Pope Francis)
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To: All

Weither you love him or hate, give Pope Francis CREDIT for helping to increase interest in the faith!


12 posted on 06/15/2014 5:57:02 AM PDT by Biggirl (“Go, do not be afraid, and serve”-Pope Francis)
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To: markomalley

Welcome home, y’all. However, I think calling RCIA a “college-like class” is a bit of a stretch. It does last two semesters, but I wouldn’t call it extremely academic.


13 posted on 06/15/2014 6:03:23 AM PDT by Unam Sanctam
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To: Mrs. Don-o

Congratulations to all in your diocese.

Tell us what you are doing right.


14 posted on 06/15/2014 6:22:52 AM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: Biggirl
Set those questions aside...

Unfortunately these questions cannot be set aside. It's the opening gambit to a deeper "truth". Like a Scientologist, one needs to level up their OT's by answering these questions before that truth is revealed.

15 posted on 06/15/2014 6:26:23 AM PDT by JPX2011
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To: markomalley

What? Not islam? barky will be on to slap this down as soon as he’s finished destroying another aspect of America with his latest islamist crap.


16 posted on 06/15/2014 7:01:27 AM PDT by onedoug
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To: markomalley
It is more amazing because being Catholic requires the most from a person:
obligatory
--Mass attendance on Sundays and holy days
--prescribed days of fasting and abstinence
--GOOD confession at least once a year
--Holy Communion at least once during the Easter season
--The faithful also have the duty of providing for the material needs of the Church, each according to his abilities: TITHES.

Protestants don't HAVE to do any of this. If they are sola Scriptura folks they just read and follow their Bible as best they can. If they sin they just ask God to forgive them. How do they know He does? Because they believe He does.
There is
*no need for confession of sins to a priest,
*no spoken act of contrition in the presence of the priest and then
*no Jesus-authorized priestly pronouncement : Te absolvo...
*no MORTAL (which MUST be confessed before Holy Communion on pain of yet another mortal sin) or VENIAL sins
*and finally, no penance imposed on the sinner, which MUST be done on pain of yet another sin.

And when He had said this,
John 20:22 "And with that he breathed on them and said, 'Receive the Holy Spirit.'"

Matthew 18:18 "Truly I tell you, whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.

Matthew 16:19
"I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven."

Catholic priests have the authority to say the words:
1. that mean that God HAS forgiven our sins (and to impose penance);
2. that change bread and wine into the Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of Jesus, God.

They truly have AMAZING and wonderful authority.

Peter and disciples decided on how their next "Vicar of Christ" was to be selected. The "Vicars of Christ" still continue today at the Vatican, rather, using the old name: Vatican Hill.

Of course, for Protestants, if it's not in Scripture, collated by the Catholic Church, then it's not valid.
SO odd that Protestants believe in the Scripture that the Catholic Church collated, and if ANYTHING isn't there, then it's not considered valid to them. I just think that is odd.

If I have erred here I apologize.
I did NOT mean to offend anyone either.

17 posted on 06/15/2014 7:10:52 AM PDT by cloudmountain
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To: JPX2011

They are all answered in the inquiry period which is the first half of RCIA. Believe me, you have people coming from all faiths and no faith, the questions will be asked and discussed many several times. Especially those “show me” kind of people, they are like St. Thomas, following Jesus but they want as much proof as can be had.


18 posted on 06/15/2014 7:19:58 AM PDT by tiki
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To: markomalley; aposiopetic; rbmillerjr; Lowell1775; JPX2011; NKP_Vet; Jed Eckert; ...
+

Freep-mail me to get on or off my pro-life and Catholic List:

Add me / Remove me

Please ping me to note-worthy Pro-Life or Catholic threads, or other threads of general interest.

19 posted on 06/15/2014 7:20:52 AM PDT by narses (Matthew 7:6. He appears to have made up his mind let him live with the consequences.)
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To: Biggirl
Set those questions aside and let the new Christian Catholics get to KNOW their faith FIRST.

"First?" What you basis is for assurance of Truth is most primary. You mean get indoctrinated under a false foundational premise without realizing it.

20 posted on 06/15/2014 7:40:32 AM PDT by daniel1212 (Come to the Lord Jesus as a contrite damned+destitute sinner, trust Him to save you, then live 4 Him)
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To: Biggirl
Not just immigration, but also conversion, so this article is very much correct.

Wrong. Without immigration RCs would be in decline.

21 posted on 06/15/2014 7:41:22 AM PDT by daniel1212 (Come to the Lord Jesus as a contrite damned+destitute sinner, trust Him to save you, then live 4 Him)
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To: daniel1212
Imagine the shrieks of indignation and cries of "bigotry" here, if Baptists were to crow about their conversion rate of Hispanics to their church and their church alone. But, they don't crow. Neither do other denominations. Baptists seek to bring souls to Christ. That can mean any number of churches with the Gospel as foundational truth, not just their own.
22 posted on 06/15/2014 7:48:51 AM PDT by RegulatorCountry
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To: RegulatorCountry

“But, they don’t crow. Neither do other denominations.”

Maybe they do, maybe they don’t. This article is from a secular newspaper is it not? So who exactly is crowing?


23 posted on 06/15/2014 8:16:35 AM PDT by vladimir998
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To: cloudmountain

Yes, you erred.

It’s much simpler than you make it:

38 Peter replied, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.


24 posted on 06/15/2014 8:21:40 AM PDT by bramps (Go West America!)
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To: cloudmountain
Forgive me, but this needs a bit of 'revision': "If they sin they just ask God to forgive them. How do they know He does? Because they believe He does."

We believe He forgives because He cannot and will not lie, and in His Word He tells us He is Faithful AND JUST to forgive us. I'm almost 69 years old, been a Christian since in my later twenties, and I end every day thanking God for yet another day and reviewing where I have failed to be the Christian He wants of and for me. I ask His forgiveness and He is faithful and just to follow through on His promises, one of which is His forgiveness toward me. It is much more than merely believing because I want to be forgiven. It is the assurance of His promises which tells me my honest confession to Him results in His forgiveness toward me.

25 posted on 06/15/2014 8:24:01 AM PDT by MHGinTN
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To: daniel1212

Obviously, their basis for assurance should be the an internet persona called daniel1212.


26 posted on 06/15/2014 8:48:36 AM PDT by D-fendr (Deus non alligatur sacramentis sed nos alligamur.)
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To: NKP_Vet
Southern Americans of today should take comfort knowing that the old Confederacy did have a European friend, and it just happened to be one of the most respected men in the world - not only a head of state, but also the leader of the world’s largest Christian religion. The day will come when Pope Pius IX will be canonized as a Saint. He has already been beatified, which puts him well on his way. When that day comes, Southerners will have a special bragging right, not enjoyed by many nations even today. They will not only be able to boast of his sympathies during and after the great War, but they will also have in their collective possession a relic of the man - a hand written letter and autographed photograph.

Unfortunately, as Catholics "Southern Americans of today" will be expected to believe in and defend both evolution and the documentary hypothesis (which are taught in all modern imprimatured Catholic bibles).

I applaud you for sticking up for Southerners when the rest of your co-religionists consider them lower than dirt, but all those "Southern Americans" are going to get burned . . . badly.

Don't look for peace in Catholicism, folks. It's chaos in there. The Truth is found elsewhere.

27 posted on 06/15/2014 8:55:30 AM PDT by Zionist Conspirator (The Left: speaking power to truth since Shevirat HaKelim.)
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To: RegulatorCountry
Imagine the shrieks of indignation and cries of "bigotry" here, if Baptists were to crow about their conversion rate of Hispanics to their church and their church alone.

A while ago one you separated brethren made a similar comment along the same lines. I suggested to them exactly what I am going to suggest to you: Go ahead post that type of thread and see how many comments you get and how many "shrieks of indignation and cries of "bigotry"" you actually get. I am guessing it will be darn few.

But go ahead and prove me wrong.

28 posted on 06/15/2014 8:55:51 AM PDT by verga (Conservative, leaning libertatian)
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To: daniel1212

First, immigration, but a very close second, conversion.

And I stand by that.


29 posted on 06/15/2014 8:56:49 AM PDT by Biggirl (“Go, do not be afraid, and serve”-Pope Francis)
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To: daniel1212

As another poster has said, early in the RCIA process, during the inquire portion time, interviews are done in regards to any possible converts.

Once they become Catholic, give them the opportunity to get to know the faith, which includes that of TRUTH.


30 posted on 06/15/2014 9:03:19 AM PDT by Biggirl (“Go, do not be afraid, and serve”-Pope Francis)
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To: JPX2011

There is nothing wrong with people who inquire about the Catholic faith, be they of a faith or no faith at all to ask very important questions. This is what the period inquire and response to their inquire(s) is all about.


31 posted on 06/15/2014 9:07:38 AM PDT by Biggirl (“Go, do not be afraid, and serve”-Pope Francis)
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To: Zionist Conspirator

“Don’t look for peace in Catholicism, folks. It’s chaos in there. The Truth is found elsewhere.”

The reality is that, there is going to be “ups and downs” in the Christian faith community regardless of whatever church one belongs to. That is the normal process of life itself.


32 posted on 06/15/2014 9:11:53 AM PDT by Biggirl (“Go, do not be afraid, and serve”-Pope Francis)
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To: Biggirl; daniel1212
Set those questions aside and let the new Christian Catholics get to KNOW their faith FIRST.

Of course. Cause answering them would cause the whole house of cards to fall and they'd know better.

Better to let them become well indoctrinated before answering questions that would make them think twice.

If their new found faith was worth its salt, it could handle questions like that. If it can't or their shaken by it, it goes to show that the foundation of their faith is weak and really deserves a closer second look.

33 posted on 06/15/2014 9:18:20 AM PDT by metmom (...fixing our eyes on Jesus, the Author and Perfecter of our faith....)
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To: daniel1212
Well, let's make a start. This is what I teach:

1. What is the basis for your assurance of truth?

Jesus Christ, Who can neither deceive nor be deceived.

2. Is an assuredly (if conditionally) infallible magisterium essential for determination of Truth (including which writings and men are of God) and preservation of faith?

I take it you're asking here about the determination of the Canon of Scripture, since there can be no confidence in the the authority of Scripture unless we know confidently what Scripture comprises.

It was by the apostolic Tradition that the Church discerned which writings are to be included in the list of the sacred books. Scripture is Liturgical: it is to be proclaimed in official public worship. The Books used --- in practice -- by the local Churches in Liturgy, comprise the Canon later formally proclaimed by local synods and councils such as Hippo and Carthage. In other words, first came the preaching of the Apostles and their immediate successors; then came liturgical practice, what the Churches actually did ("Lex orandi, lex credendi"); then came formal Canon.

3. Does being the historical instruments and stewards of Divine revelation mean that such is that assuredly infallible magisterium?

The local Churches (meaning, in Catholic parlance, dioceses) were, under the guidance of the Holy Spirit, the historical instruments and stewards of Divine revelation; it follows that the Churches in union were necessarily infallible in their transmission of Revelation.

4. Are those who knowingly dissent from the latter in rebellion to God?

I'm not sure what you mean by "the latter." Those who dissent from this Revelation are dissenting from God.

Whether this imputable as a subjective, morally deliberate "rebellion" depends on the extent to which the individual knows and intends rebellion against Our Lord the Holy Spirit. Sacred Scripture must be read and interpreted in the light of the same Spirit by whom it was written.

The Catechism of the Catholic Church gives a fuller treatment here.

34 posted on 06/15/2014 9:18:58 AM PDT by Mrs. Don-o ("The Holy Catholic Church: the more Holy she is, the more Catholic she is.")
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To: Biggirl
“Don’t look for peace in Catholicism, folks. It’s chaos in there. The Truth is found elsewhere.”

The reality is that, there is going to be “ups and downs” in the Christian faith community regardless of whatever church one belongs to. That is the normal process of life itself.

It's true that all religions are currently in crisis. There doesn't appear to be any that have been exempt from the maelstrom.

Catholicism is a particularly bad offender, however, because of its false claim to be semper idem (always the same) and its rampant liberalism/modernism, which infects the entire church from the top down and probably has for over a century. Also the post tried to portray Catholicism as appropriate for rural (white) Southerners when contemporary Catholicism is quite hostile to them and vehemently rejects traditional Biblical authorship, six day young earth creationism, chrstian Zionism, and apocalypticism of any kind. Some Southerners reject one or two of these but to reject all four is to be profoundly alien to the Southern culture.

I hope you know that I have experienced the "bait and switch" that is Catholicism first hand.

35 posted on 06/15/2014 9:45:45 AM PDT by Zionist Conspirator (The Left: speaking power to truth since Shevirat HaKelim.)
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To: cloudmountain
SO odd that Protestants believe in the Scripture that the Catholic Church collated, and if ANYTHING isn't there, then it's not considered valid to them. I just think that is odd. So once again the "the Catholic Church gave you the Bible, so she is what you must follow" polemic is employed when faced with the absence of Scriptural warrant for her traditions.

This is the standard RC recourse, the argument being that the stewards of Scripture are the infallible interpreters of it, but for clarification please answer the questions in post #8 above .

36 posted on 06/15/2014 10:30:42 AM PDT by daniel1212 (Come to the Lord Jesus as a contrite damned+destitute sinner, trust Him to save you, then live 4 Him)
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To: bramps
Yes, you erred.
It’s much simpler than you make it:
38 Peter replied, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.

How can a newly baptized baby have any sins to be forgiven?

What does the baby receive when s/he receives the gift of the Holy Spirit?

Catholics USED to say Holy GHOST but that disappeared over the decades. The Protestants have obviously FOLLOWED the Catholic change.

How was defrocked ROMAN CATHOLIC PRIEST, Father Martin Luther, allowed to disregard the Apostolic Tradition and all the teachings of the Catholic Church that had ALREADY been in existence for ONE THOUSAND FIVE HUNDRED YEARS?

Now there are over 30,000 DIFFERENT Protestant denominations?
Is THAT keeping it simple?
This ALL started with defrocked Father Martin Luther. I hope he's happy with that.

37 posted on 06/15/2014 10:38:50 AM PDT by cloudmountain
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To: tiki
They are all answered in the inquiry period which is the first half of RCIA. Believe me, you have people coming from all faiths and no faith, the questions will be asked and discussed many several times. Especially those “show me” kind of people, they are like St. Thomas, following Jesus but they want as much proof as can be had.

Then why is it so difficult to get these questions answered clearly, if at all, while the "the Catholic Church gave you the Bible, so she is what you must follow" assertion which precipitates these queries is so often employed?

38 posted on 06/15/2014 10:41:25 AM PDT by daniel1212 (Come to the Lord Jesus as a contrite damned+destitute sinner, trust Him to save you, then live 4 Him)
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To: metmom
Better to let them become well indoctrinated before answering questions that would make them think twice.

But that is to be discouraged,

It follows that the Church is essentially an unequal society, that is, a society comprising two categories of per sons, the Pastors and the flock...the one duty of the multitude is to allow themselves to be led, and, like a docile flock, to follow the Pastors. - VEHEMENTER NOS, an Encyclical of Pope Pius X promulgated on February 11, 1906.

“All that we do [as must be patent enough now] is to submit our judgment and conform our beliefs to the authority Almighty God has set up on earth to teach us; this, and nothing else.”

Holding to Catholic principles how can he do otherwise? How can he consistently seek after truth when he is convinced that he holds it? Who else can teach him religious truth when he believes that an infallible Church gives him God's word and interprets it in the true and only sense? — (John H. Stapleton, Explanation of Catholic Morals, Chapter XXIII “Absolute, immediate, and unfaltering submission to the teaching of God's Church on matters of faith and morals-----this is what all must give..” —“Henry G. Graham, "What Faith Really Means",

39 posted on 06/15/2014 10:46:04 AM PDT by daniel1212 (Come to the Lord Jesus as a contrite damned+destitute sinner, trust Him to save you, then live 4 Him)
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To: Mrs. Don-o; metmom
1. What is the basis for your assurance of truth?

< Jesus Christ, Who can neither deceive nor be deceived.

I think that is such a given as to seem like an avoidance of the question. How about "What is your instrumental basis for assurance of truth?"

2. Is an assuredly (if conditionally) infallible magisterium essential for determination of Truth (including which writings and men are of God) and preservation of faith?

I take it you're asking here about the determination of the Canon of Scripture,

If that is all i meant then i would have said Scripture, not "including which writings and men are of God." But i mean, "Is an assuredly infallible magisterium essential for determination of Truth, both oral and written, and including which men are of God?"

there can be no confidence in the the authority of Scripture unless we know confidently what Scripture comprises.

So one must have a complete canon in order to have confidence in the the authority of Scripture?

It was by the apostolic Tradition that the Church discerned...

That simply describes the process, not how even such a medium as apostolic tradition was established as being of God. But would you say the infallible magisterium essential to determine what writings are of God?

Cardinal Dulles states, "People cannot discover the contents of revelation by their unaided powers of reason and observation. They have to be told by people who have received in from on high." - Cardinal Avery Dulles, SJ, “Magisterium: Teacher and Guardian of the Faith,” p. 72;

3. Does being the historical instruments and stewards of Divine revelation mean that such is that assuredly infallible magisterium?

The local Churches (meaning, in Catholic parlance, dioceses) were...

But this presumes a centralized magisterium, and so your answer is that being the magisterium over the body which was the historical instruments and stewards of Divine revelation means or requires assured (if conditional) infallibility?

4. Are those who knowingly dissent from the latter in rebellion to God?

I'm not sure what you mean by "the latter." Those who dissent from this Revelation are dissenting from God.

"Latter" refers to the assuredly infallible magisterium just mentioned, since it determines what the Revelation is. Is that a yes or a no? As Pope Boniface VIII in his infallible Unam Sanctam states, "Whoever, therefore, resists this authority [the pope], resists the command of God Himself."

Whether this imputable as a subjective, morally deliberate "rebellion" depends on the extent to which the individual knows and intends rebellion against Our Lord the Holy Spirit. Sacred Scripture must be read and interpreted in the light of the same Spirit by whom it was written.

I said "knowingly" for that reason. But as per your answer, it seems you must mean that those who see obedience to God as requiring dissent from Rome in any dogma is rebellion against God, under the premise that being the historical instruments and stewards of Scripture, and inheritors of Divine promises of guidance and preservation, "the same God is the author both of the Sacred Books and of the doctrine committed to the Church" and thus "all interpretation is foolish and false which... is opposed to the doctrine of the Church.(Providentissimus Deus)

Could you answer these more clearly? Thanks.

40 posted on 06/15/2014 10:46:18 AM PDT by daniel1212 (Come to the Lord Jesus as a contrite damned+destitute sinner, trust Him to save you, then live 4 Him)
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To: daniel1212
So once again the "the Catholic Church gave you the Bible, so she is what you must follow" polemic is employed when faced with the absence of Scriptural warrant for her traditions.
This is the standard RC recourse, the argument being that the stewards of Scripture are the infallible interpreters of it, but for clarification please answer the questions in post #8 above

Polemic? Where does our Lord's words in the Catholic Mass use "polemic"? I've never heard it. I used to watch the T.V. evangelicals use it...but that was a long time ago.

At the Last Supper Jesus did say to the Twelve: "Do this in memory of Me." Without the Church there would have been no handing down of Jesus's life, death and resurrection.

From Wikipedia:

Papal infallibility is a dogma of the Catholic Church that states that, in virtue of the promise of Jesus to Peter, the Pope is preserved from the possibility of error "When, in the exercise of his office as shepherd and teacher of all Christians, in virtue of his supreme apostolic authority, he defines a doctrine concerning faith or morals to be held by the whole Church."

This doctrine was defined dogmatically in the First Vatican Council of 1869–1870, but had been defended before that, existing already in medieval theology and being the majority opinion at the time of the Counter-Reformation.

According to Catholic theology, there are several concepts important to the understanding of infallible, divine revelation: Sacred Scripture, Sacred Tradition, and the Sacred Magisterium.

The infallible teachings of the Pope are part of the Sacred Magisterium, which also consists of ecumenical councils and the "...ordinary and universal magisterium."

In Catholic theology, papal infallibility is one of the channels of the infallibility of the Church. The infallible teachings of the Pope must be based on, or at least not contradict, Sacred Tradition or Sacred Scripture.

The doctrine of infallibility relies on one of the cornerstones of Catholic dogma: that of Petrine supremacy of the pope, and his authority as the ruling agent who decides what is accepted as formal beliefs in the Roman Catholic Church.

The Church has been around a LOT longer than the 16th century FIRST PROTESTANT defrocked reformer FATHER Martin Luther.
What are Protestants protesting today?

==========================

All argument/discussion aside: God bless you and your family on this Father's Day.

41 posted on 06/15/2014 10:58:31 AM PDT by cloudmountain
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To: daniel1212

You forget there is what is called the “priesthood of the faithful” as well as ministry priesthood.


42 posted on 06/15/2014 11:02:13 AM PDT by Biggirl (“Go, do not be afraid, and serve”-Pope Francis)
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To: MHGinTN
We believe He forgives because He cannot and will not lie, and in His Word He tells us He is Faithful AND JUST to forgive us. I'm almost 69 years old, been a Christian since in my later twenties, and I end every day thanking God for yet another day and reviewing where I have failed to be the Christian He wants of and for me. I ask His forgiveness and He is faithful and just to follow through on His promises, one of which is His forgiveness toward me. It is much more than merely believing because I want to be forgiven. It is the assurance of His promises which tells me my honest confession to Him results in His forgiveness toward me.

So YOU get to decide on what your "honest confession" to him is.
YOU get to commit WHATEVER sin you want and only have to BELIEVE enough and you will be forgiven.
"Lord, I killed a man and I am REALLY, REALLY sorry." Poof, forgiven, no repercussions, no penance, no punishment.
Gee, that's easy. Just believe that you are forgiven NO MATTER WHAT...and you are. Poof.

You can CONTINUE down you path of sin and just have to say: Lord I am REALLY sorry. Poof. Forgiven AGAIN!

So easy to be a Protestant.

43 posted on 06/15/2014 11:10:02 AM PDT by cloudmountain
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To: cloudmountain
You can CONTINUE down you path of sin and just have to say: Lord I am REALLY sorry. Poof. Forgiven AGAIN!

So easy to be a Protestant.

Quite apart from the issue of the instrumentality through which sins are forgiven (a sacrament or directly), Catholics continue down their path of labeling the Bible to be primitive mythology that "never actually happened," in effect calling G-d a (chas vechalilah!) liar.

I'd say having that to answer for at judgment pretty much evens out the Protestants' lack of external instrumentality.

44 posted on 06/15/2014 11:51:17 AM PDT by Zionist Conspirator (The Left: speaking power to truth since Shevirat HaKelim.)
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To: cloudmountain
"YOU get to commit WHATEVER sin you want and only have to BELIEVE enough and you will be forgiven."

If this is really what is in your heart as belief then you really do not understand The Grace of God in Christ. When Salvation comes to one who believes in Him, their want to is changed.

Your red herring stinks to someone who has Christ in them, The Hope of Glory. Aside from your abuse of the fallacy of the undistributed middle, man cannot forgive sin. ONLY God can do that. When God changes the want to, it makes certain behavior abhorrent to the Child of God. I'm surprised that you don't know that. Or perhaps you do and have allowed your mean streak to get the better of your heart toward a fellow Christian.

Confessing to a Priest does not get absolution form sin. Though their is great good in doing so in the belief that this Priest is servant for God's Grace, it is God Who forgives, not the recitation of Hail Mary's or other canticles.

45 posted on 06/15/2014 11:58:09 AM PDT by MHGinTN
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To: MHGinTN; All

Guilt-ridden former Catholics are the absolute worse Catholic bashers. A rational thinking person would never abandon the precious blood and body of our Lord and Savior. Total ignorance of the faith is the only reason a Catholic would leave the faith. Devout Catholics don’t leave the faith. I have also known many females that were raised Catholic and attended Mass regularly, then had the misfortune of marrying a Catholic-hating good ole boy baptist/pentacostal and were browbeaten to death by the bum until they started going to his Bible-thumping church and “converted” to his faith. The South is full of these types. You’ll go to my church or you’ll not go to any church. Now get me another beer and speak when you’re spoken to!


46 posted on 06/15/2014 12:23:57 PM PDT by NKP_Vet ("Truth is like a lion. You don't have to defend it. Let it loose. It will defend itself")
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To: cloudmountain

Yet the reason that Catholic converts to Evangelical churches, is that they are seeking a deeper relationship with their God, not a lessor one.

90% of them give that reason, that seems to disagree with your claim.


47 posted on 06/15/2014 12:39:39 PM PDT by ansel12 ((Ted Cruz and Mike Lee-both of whom sit on the Senate Judiciary Comm as Ginsberg's importance fades)
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To: RegulatorCountry

Please do post some, I love stories about people coming to Christ.

After I became Catholic I ran into a group of older women who had known me growing up in the Methodist Church. It was a fundraising dinner and I was waiting on them. They asked if I had become Catholic and I said I had and waited for the lecture I thought I was going to get. One woman graciously said, “I am so glad that you have found your faith home.”


48 posted on 06/15/2014 12:56:46 PM PDT by tiki
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To: metmom

I will repeat what I said this morning, the first half of the RCIA process is the inquiry period. It is where they ask questions.

You have to understand that when you are confirmed you agree you believe what the Catholic Church holds to be true and no one wants anyone to do that in ignorance.

Believe me, they ask all the standard “Protestant” questions. I know I did.


49 posted on 06/15/2014 1:03:15 PM PDT by tiki
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To: NKP_Vet

Sorry, too cryptic for my old brain. If you’re trying to toss an insult, be more pointed. If you’re trying to retard some of the flames, well then use love. What flavor of beer would you like?


50 posted on 06/15/2014 1:05:58 PM PDT by MHGinTN
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